Securing Software through the Synergy of DevOps and Security

By siliconindia   |   Thursday, 04 May 2023, 13:05 IST
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Securing Software through the Synergy of DevOps and Security

The discipline and practice of securing the entire DevOps environment through strategies, policies, procedures, and technology is DevOps security. Every stage of the DevOps lifecycle, including conception, design, development, test, release, support, maintenance, and beyond, should incorporate security.

Security has traditionally been an afterthought in many organisations. It has always been a checklist item that gets the least attention and priority after development. The operations team collaborates with the development team to deliver and maintain their software. The result of this collaboration between the development and operations teams, working together to design, ship, and maintain software, was largely successful and came to be known as the DevOps method. But with DevOps, security was not always a top concern. Additionally, the complexity of software development, deployment, and maintenance has grown steadily at scale.

More than ever, all programs must include components for security and privacy. This presents a hurdle because it is difficult to change ingrained practices suddenly. However, the increase in security incidents and the continued high cost of data breaches for organisations necessitates the change. To guarantee that security is built into every product from the moment it is conceived, significant effort is being made. This is commonly referred to as shifting security to the left or DevSecOps.

The majority of businesses are dedicated to providing their clients with secure software. At the moment, new software is created at a breakneck pace. Developers frequently deploy new changes to products every hour in numerous contexts. A delicate balance must be struck between making sure that innovation doesn't move too slowly and keeping products' security intact. There has been a significant push in recent years for improved security in the SDLC procedures, including from governments. New techniques for application and software supply chain security have emerged as a result of this.

DevSecOps and Software Supply Chain Security to the Rescue

It is widely acknowledged that DevSecOps practices and protecting the software supply chain are essential for significantly lowering the risks associated with software and application security. Security should be integrated across the whole software development lifecycle, according to DevSecOps. Security is taken into account throughout the entire development cycle. Numerous initiatives have been implemented to encourage this adoption. However, Automation of Security Testing and Security Champions are the two big practices within any organisation.

Automation of Security Testing:

The amount of human effort required to assess each code update is significantly reduced by constructing and automating security testing within CI/CD pipelines. Modern security scanning within pipelines heavily relies on DAST (dynamic application security testing), SAST (static application security testing), IAST (interactive application security testing), and even SCA (software composition analysis) scans. The majority of the time, if a security flaw is detected, that specific build fails, and the distribution of potentially vulnerable software is then stopped.

Security Champions:

It could go by several names in various organisations. However, training developers to have a security mindset has turned out to be highly beneficial, especially in helping to address the cybersecurity talent shortage problem.

Integrating security into the software development process is crucial as online threats develop. DevSecOps is a cultural shift that encourages teamwork, shared accountability, and ongoing development while integrating security into each phase of the development process. Organisations can produce more secure software more quickly and lower the risk of security breaches by implementing DevSecOps best practices, which can enhance cooperation and cut costs.